- The Washington Times - Thursday, April 1, 2010

Former United Nations Ambassador John R. Bolton said Thursday that President Obama is “naive” in thinking more sanctions against Iran will stop the country from acquiring a nuclear arsenal.

“This additional round of sanctions will have no material impact,” Mr. Bolton told The Washington Times’ “America’s Morning News” radio show. “The test is, can you pass a sanctions resolution that will stop Iran from continuing to pursue nuclear weapons, and the unambiguous answer is no. This continued talk about sanctions is counterproductive because it gives people the kind of a warm and fuzzy and comfortable feeling that we’re doing something when in reality we’re not.”

The United Nations Security Council imposed a round of sanctions two years ago. On Wednesday, China announced it would begin to negotiate with the United States and other world leaders on new sanctions.

Mr. Bolton, ambassador under President George W. Bush and a former arms-control director at the State Department, remains an outspoken critic of the Obama administration’s foreign policy.

He was critical last month of the president’s new treaty with Russia that reduces both country’s nuclear arsenal by roughly 30 percent. Mr. Bolton also called that plan naive and said it threatens American sovereignty. However, he has withheld final judgment until the details are discussed in congressional hearings.

Mr. Bolton also has accused Mr. Obama since taking office roughly 14 months ago of being soft on national security, pursing the Bush administration’s failed foreign policies and placing too much emphasis on health care while Iran continues to threaten its neighbors by testing nuclear missiles and developing a uranium enrichment facility.

“We’re way, way behind the curve. Iran is much further along in getting nuclear weapons,” he said. “We had 14 months of a naive and inexperience president. I just worry that the administration at bottom thinks it can deal with Iran. That’s a fantasy.”

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